Thursday, March 12, 2009

Obituary of our Family Friend, Kathy Klatte

From the IndyStar

Kathryn Jean Klatte Who left her handprint on the hearts of so many young, old, and furry, passed away March 7, 2009 while visiting her father in Sun City, AZ. She was 54 and a longtime resident of Indianapolis. Kathy was born November 11, 1954 in San Francisco, CA and was a graduate of Pike High School and Indiana University. Kathy had a passion for outdoor activities, including landscaping, bird watching, and scuba diving. She overcame her fear of heights to bungee jump off hot air balloons and parasail. Her love of music and travel led her to follow her favorite jazz musicians on cruises for the last five years. As an avid gardener, Kathy's backyard was her sanctuary. If you had the pleasure of sharing it with her, you could soon realize that the earth, plants, birds, and pond had a connection to Kathy's soul. Every plant or flower she touched blossomed and thrived, just like her friendships. Kathy had a wonderful gift: a soft spoken charm. She saw goodness in all people, and nudged us to be better, to love more, and to open our minds and share our differences. She worked for the Indiana Association for the Education of Young Children as a Quality Advisor. Previously she spent 24 years at Day Nursery Association as a teacher, Center Director, and Director for Center Administration. Kathy taught others kindness, professionalism, zest for life, respect for all things living, and how to smile. Those touched by Kathy will honor her by dedicating themselves to continuing her legacy of making the world a better place for young children. Day Nursery Association has established the Kathy Klatte Award for Outstanding Excellence in Early Childhood Education. This annual endowment will use donations in her name to honor outstanding professionals in early childhood education. Memorial contributions may be made to Day Nursery Foundation, 615 N. Alabama, Ste. 300, Indianapolis, IN 46204. Kathy was preceded in death in December by her mother, Barbara Lyntton Klatte. She is survived by her father, Dr. Eugene Klatte; sisters Susan Duhn Mand (Frank), Constance Gilbert (George), Jeanette Ashmore (Ed), Teresa Gibson (Tim); her significant other Ron Hellmann; her beloved nieces and nephews, and her treasured friends.

Kathy was my preschool teacher. She met me when I was Maddox's age. She has been at every major life event I have had, sharing stories about when I was little. She had an incredible infectious smile and a soft voice that made you feel warm inside. Her heart was enormous and her spirit larger than the world in which she lived. It was a priviledge to be a part of her life and I pray that I can honor her appropriately through my life. Thank you, Kathy, for your spirit and the incredible example you have set.

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